Working for DODOlogic has given me the privilege of meeting some really interesting people who are involved in the sport of drifting. A few months ago I got together with Josh from the DeadBeats drift team at his shop/home on Vancouver Island. He invited me into his home, we hung out and he showed me around his shop. We swapped stories and upheld the traditional ‘decal swap’ that is common amongst all car enthusiasts. Unfortunately Josh didn’t have any cars that were ready to be driven at the time, so we made plans to get together in the future and ‘shred the gnar.’
Two months later Josh and I were able to meet up once again, along with some other car friends through DeadBeats. I’m not going to expose any other ‘gushy’ details of the location or the experience. If you’ve ever wondered if there was a place in Canada that is similar to the mountain roads in Japan, this place would be it — with a Canadian twist.
‘Streeting’ is obviously a touchy subject, but I can never avoid the attraction I have for it if it’s done in a safe and controlled way. I don’t mean to push any buttons, but I hope you can at least enjoy this short film.
“Sir, get back in your vehicle!” The U.S. Border Patrol Officer scowled at me, and I scurried back to my car and frantically seated myself. The motor that powers my passenger window died last year and my car is right-hand drive, and since I didn’t have Ryan Benoit to assist me this year, I was a ‘one-camera band.’ After being scolded, I was allowed to carry on through scot-free. So I hightailed it out of there with the biggest grin on my face — probably because I felt like I was inches away from being detained. Welcome to America, indeed.
I was on my way to Monroe, Washington: home to Evergreen Speedway, the track that sees regular amateur drift events and of course, holds one of the rounds of the Formula Drift series.
It was raining; this is the Pacific Northwest so it’s often raining. I was feeling optimistic about how the day was going to go. But when I arrived at the track I met up with a fellow media friend, Wes Barber, who came down from B.C.’s interior to take photos. It was good to be around ‘car friends’ once again, and regardless of the rain I knew it was going to be a great day.
I won’t dive into the nitty, gritty details; now it’s your turn to investigate what went on. I hope you get a feel for what it was like to be there and remember, this video was made possible by good ol’ fashioned American freedom.
Here’s a fun fact: Don’t put a Pedo Bear decal on your window. An Border Official had never questioned me about that decal until that day, so maybe the time has finally come to take it down.
I had some fun making this video with my fellow media friends, Ryan Benoit and Gaelen Norman. We met up one weekend last year and decided that we wanted to interview local shop owners and drivers that operate in the PNW, to see an in-depth look at why they’re involved in motor sports. We wanted to create an intimate environment and show our audience what these people are like when they’re not driving or hard at work. Today you’ll be getting to know Steve Thompson from the grassroots drift team, Drift Union and also the pilot behind the infamous purple Toyota Soarer.
- Devan <3
After a while things at the SEMA show seem to blend together, with all the walking, photo taking and observing you start to really lose track of where you have been and what you’ve taken photos of. What I’ve learned from my experience at SEMA is that you really want to have an idea of what vendors and cars you’d like to see right off the bat. It’s really easy to fall into that tourist category (like I did) and just wander for hours looking at everything and anything that catches your eye. But on the third day of SEMA, while roaming the far corners of the Las Vegas convention centre I suddenly stumbled upon the DSport Magazine booth. Well, maybe booth isn’t the right word since they had two of their project cars on deck!
I’ve tried to compress my three day excursion to North America’s largest car exhibition into a three minute video. My trip was comprised of three full days walking around the Las Vegas convention centre, enjoying the notorious sounds from rally cars, eating great American burgers and anticipating a massive bloody nose from the dry desert air. This video is the product of what I thought was worthy enough to show you, the audience. I don’t think any amount of words, photos or videos can truly illustrate to you of how big the SEMA show really is. I hope however that this video gives you an idea at what level of automotive finesse this exhibition has to offer. One element that I took from this experience is that I will probably never be able to appreciate any car show ever again, unless of course it is the infamous Tokyo Auto Salon. I hope you all enjoy my version of the SEMA trip summed up in three minutes.
- Devan Francis
Slammed! That is the word I’ll use to describe how I feel after my trip to Las Vegas for the SEMA show. The trip was intense and I am really glad that I was able to take part in it, but coming home to a bunch of school work is not something that I really gave much thought to before I left…Miraculously though I have thrown together a small teaser for the Global Rallycross footage that I captured over the past few days. You viewers will have to wait for me to catch up on my homework to see the rest of trip, so until that time comes enjoy the anti-lag explosions and audio peaks on whatever platform you watch our content on.
Our hotel room stinks of feet, sweat and dirt from yesterday’s event. It was day two of the Drift Union Invitational and it felt way too early to be heading back out to the track. The Rong Garage crew and I began the daunting task of deciding who was showering first, and then where we would eat breakfast. It was important to get as much food in you as you could before going up there, because although there was food, I personally didn’t feel like eating any more hot dogs…
Driving a truck that’s hauling a trailer with a car on it — when the truck really shouldn’t be hauling anything — was pretty intense, especially when you’re over 1,200 km from home. But we made it up Carmi Ave., which is the road that takes you from the heart of Penticton to the infamous home of Drift Union: Penticton Speedway. Although it was still too early to be doing much of anything, the weather was extremely promising. The day before we’d been hit by several rainy weather systems which led to a very slow start to day one. But before you knew it, everyone was there and soon enough the grumble — and sometimes hesitant burst of an engine — filled the valley. It was time to party.
Now, I know this event happened at the beginning of summer, but sometimes you have to let a good thing lie before it’s brought up again. This is our final installment from the Drift Union Invitational, day two. I hope you enjoy watching some wall taps, fireballs and tire smoke from one of the gnarliest events of the year.
I’ve just gotten off the phone with Jordan, hes given me the directions to his place (Hotboyz headquarters) and we’ll be there in about an hour or so. We’re hungry and so is he, perfect.
I’ve worked with Jordan and the rest of the DODO crew for just over a year now. Its funny when you see someone on Facebook, you talk to them through chat and share content with them but you have never truly spoken a word to one another. Needless to say meeting Jordan and the rest of the Hotboyz crew made me feel like I was going on a blind date.
Driving up to the house I can feel some excitement forming between my friends and I. We’ve seen the photos of the beige beasts and who the heck wouldn’t be excited to see a miata with an SR20 in it? After exchanging some firm bro-style handshakes we follow Jordan and his girlfriend Kyla to a local eatery that is highly recommended, Memphis Blues. Poutine smothered in immense amounts of pork and gravy to pulled pork sandwiches that will make you consider ordering seconds. We were more then satisfied once we left. Back to the Hotboyz headquarters to meet the rest of the gang.
A beige Toyota Cresta rolls through the back alley and parks. A tall, skinny guy steps out, its Jack Connelly. You can’t miss Jack on the track, he’s slingin’ his saloon with his Stig style helmet at every DU event and has been coming out here for a long time. His friend Eric Zapata can’t be missed either with his 1JZ powered 240SX these three are sure not to disappoint any crowd.
Now enough with the chit-chat, watch this video to get a good look at Western Canada’s fresh grassroots drift crew. I promise they’ll get you all hot and bothered.